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Melanochromis auratus
Auratus Cichlid

 Age of Aquariums > Freshwater Fish > Auratus Cichlid - Melanochromis auratus

Photos & Comments

Melanochromis_auratus_3.jpg (16kb)
Photo Credit: Alexandra Ellwood

I have one of these fish. It is kept with an electric blue johanni, yellow lab, lithibate, another cichlid and 2 pictus catfish. The only fish which stands in its way is the johanni who is equally as tough. The auratus has already killed a red zebra and a pleco. He has injured the other cichlid. Don't put these with smaller fish. They will eventually be killed. If you're going to keep it with peacocks, make sure they're way bigger than him. Johanni's and chipokae's are good company because they're from the same family and are equally as mean. He's really cool to watch and he hasn't reached his full coloration. Right now he is black and yellow. When they get bigger the black turns to a dark blue. You can tell they are hurt or sick when they turn a brown color. Great cichlid.

Contributed by D-Boe

My auratus rules the tank! He spends the whole day chasing around the other cichlids. They are beautiful and very easy to keep, but be sure to include many places to hide if kept with other cichlid species!

Contributed by Pat Mack

I have had tremendous success with my auratus. I keep them in an african cichlid community tank. I have 1 male and 1 female. They live with a dozen other cichlids and even though they are very territorial, they haven`t caused any problems yet. They even spawned a few weeks back. I keep the babies in a separate tank and they are doing great. The key to my success is NUMEROUS rock formations and caves. I always make sure that there are enough caves for everybody so no one is left without a hiding spot. I also change the layout of the rocks at each water change.

Contributed by Diane

Ahh, the joys of overstocking and maintaining the delicate balance of Malawi Lake Cichild aggression! My brilliantly colored, blue male Auratus is the smallest member of a four cichlid community in a 125 L tank. His three companions are all Pseudotropheus. A male albino Zebra - at almost 15 cm, is the King Daddy du' pappa! Attacks everybody. A blue female Socolofi. Hides in terror from the Albino Zebra, but chases everyone else when she's in the mood. A Crabro. At least twice as big as that vicious little Auratus, but flees if chased by the blue, tiny brute 'Napoleon'. My aquarium is thick with rocks and caves for harried cichlids to dart into. Definitely makes you work when doing water changes. But the Cichlid 'Show' is always interesting to watch.

Contributed by B. McReynolds

I have one of these little monsters. Originally I bought two, an albino and a black one. The black auratus has an awesome silver stripe where the black stripe would normally be and he destroyed the other one. Currently I keep him in a 110 L with a convict cichlid and what's left of a family of jewel cichlids I have. At one time I had nine jewels, now about eight months after they were introduced to the tank there are only two left. Also, I used to keep an electric blue in the tank with him. I'm proud to say that the electric blue has recovered and has almost completely grown his tail back to full size. Like I said before, a little monster. To anyone interested in getting one, be warned: what you put in with him could be missing in a few days.

Contributed by Brian Hauber

I had my Auratus with other cichlids and he totally destroyed them, he ended up by himself in the tank...but then I put in a school of 6 tiger barbs with him and they get along great, the Auratus just ignores's been a month now and nothing has happened. I think this is pretty strange after I saw what he did to cichlids 3 times his size...

Contributed by a visitor

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